KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – If there’s something the Spaniards get right, it’s passion! In conjunction with Malaysia and Spain’s 50th year of diplomatic relations, the Spanish Embassy of Malaysia brings a treat to Kuala Lumpur Performing Arts Centre.
Alberto Marin plays the part of artistic director and guitarist in the six-piece band that plays the sounds of Origen. The flamenco show wherein its music is not only meant to be heard but also to be lived.
“Flamenco has been too often modernized, even in Spain. We wanted to bring what it originally started as – a conversation filled passion,” Alberto Marin says.
It also features 26-year-old dancer Cristina Carrasco and her partner Javier Serrano. Both have danced throughout Asia, South America, and Europe and have their own flamenco companies back in Barcelona. These professionals prepare for a show by rehearsing an average of five hours daily.
“We came to plan this event a few months ago when Alberto was playing his guitar at home. Immediately, we decided that what better way to share our culture with Malaysia than to bring the best we know to perform here,” said Karim Chacon, the show’s manager and producer, when asked the origins of the ASEAN tour.
More than a dance
Flamenco itself is not merely a dance between the two on the floor. It’s also a conversation between the eight artists inviting the audience to feel alive with them in true “Tablado” fashion.
Tablado refers to the platform where the two artists dance on. The sound of their feet adding to the music.
Fun fact: this style of dancing was what replaced the Spanish cabaret in the 1960s.
The beat of José Cortes’ “El Indio” on percussions along with Rodrigo Parejo and the sound of his flute converge with the hypnotic voices of Abraham Jiménez and David De José. The music will have you in a trance of passion and fury, pushing you to feel the show from the edge of your seats.
At the press preview, dances that were contrasted in meaning and emotions were performed. Members of the media also enjoyed a form of Seguidilla flamenco – a true a crowd favorite.
Art at any age
For those who are interested in learning this Spanish art form, Carrasco says: “When it comes to art, especially one like flamenco or any form, it does not matter how old you start – as long as you start with a passion in your soul.”
Carrasco started dancing at the age of three in her hometown of Cordoba, a province in southern Spain. This is her third time in Kuala Lumpur and she says the city already feels like a home away from Spain. This was echoed by Spanish Ambassador Carlos Domínguez Díaz who was present at the preview. He was also pleased to have the artists to make his Monday night feel like a weekend.
If you missed the one hour preview at Bobo KL last Sunday, these talented artists will be showing their full ensemble on the 12th and 13th of July at KLPAC. Get your tickets at www.ticketpro.com.my where the price starts at RM99 (USD23.04) onwards. – The Binge